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079b2656

2653 does not appear here as the car was rebuilt to 8019 in 1935.

2654 leads the parade on Bloomfield Avenue to the disgust and chagrin of impatient motorists eyeing the approaching stretch of clear road. (DE, 4-307, 56XL). Note extensive use of Belgian granite cobblestone paving, here at Montclair Center. Same paving was used on Main Street, West Orange, on the 21 Orange line.

Booming auto traffic in the early 1920's created political and economic hassles never before seen as traction interests battled increasing franchise restrictions, parking ordinances and new competition from autos and buses. The death knell sounded loud and clear when trolleymen and traction executives began commuting to work in their own automobiles.

The jitney wars were no help. Beginning in the late teens of the century, many car owners began to drive ahead of trolleys on the lines to pick up waiting passengers.

For a nickel (a "jitney") they would drive the passengers into town, three or four to each auto, in comparative luxury and comfort. Soon many jitney owners bought second or third cars and some collected small fleets, but large or small, they were all bleeding precious revenue from the trolley companies which were marginal operations at best, anyway.

Electric Railway Journal articles and editorials asked of traction companies, "Have you ever seen an automobile with wooden seats?", thus birthing a national trend toward "deluxing" obsolete trolleys and accelerating the demand for modernization.

2655 does not appear here as it was rebuilt to car 8016 in 1935.

2656 has been freshly repainted and is ready for a turn on the 21 Orange line. Roseville, west yard. (DE, 4-307, 56XL)

 

079c2656

Rounding the curve just west of Roseville barn, inbound 2656 rolls easily along Main Street, approaching the Newark-East Orange border. 21 Orange line.

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Content: © 1997 Al Mankoff
Layout & Design: © 1997
Brett Putnam